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Entries in painting (10)

Thursday
Apr042013

Marion Rose Inspired Buffalo Painting


When my husband said he wanted a painting of a buffalo to put over our fireplace, I couldn't wait to get my brushes out and start painting!

We LOVE the "Bison Head Color Study III" painting by Marion Rose, so I decided I would try to replicate it.  If you are not already familiar with Marion Rose's art, please explore her site and let yourself get swept away in the amazing colors.  She was a master of bold, bright, and colorful pieces of American art.  Unfortunately, Marion Rose died in 2011.  Her art is a constant inspiration for me, so replicating one of her pieces was very special.

First grab some bright Acrylic paints and some large brushes.  I actually used a stain brush from Home Depot and found that I was able to create the best texture with this large type of brush.  I did use smaller brushes for the eye, horn, and some other highlight areas.  I wanted this painting to be massive, so I waited until I had a 40% off coupon at Michaels and bought a 36"x48" wrapped gallery canvas.


 Once I had a sketch down, I started with the background. Start by slapping, yes literally slap, the paint onto the canvas. Then alternate your brush strokes to create a textured/chunky appearance.

Now for the fun part! Building the Buffalo head took a lot of layers to create the depth, shadows, and contours.  Make sure to stop and wash your brushes every so often so your paints don't get muddy.

Don't be afraid to use black paint to really create your shadowed areas. You will be amazed how the layers will "pop" when the bright colors are bordered by darks.



I have always found eyes to be incredibly stressful.  They really help to bring emotion to your piece, so take your time! By adding a simple white highlight, you can create shape and realism to your eye.

 Before I put the brushes down, I went back with some bright colors to add last minute highlights.

This little Buffalo has a new home in our living room! I just love him, although next time I'll go bigger!


M. 

Monday
Feb252013

Painting the Blue-Grey Tanager


When I started working on my pieces for the 12x12 Art Show & Silent Auction, I knew I wanted to paint a Nicaraguan bird.  Luckily, Nicaragua is home to 698 different bird species!  I decided on a Blue-Grey Tanager, which is found throughout Central America.  In a previous post that explains this charity art show I had promised a tutorial for this piece, here it is! You can read more about this charity art show on my Hope Comes in Color Post.

I used oil paint for this piece so that I was able to layer paint and create a "feathered" look.   I started by sketching a basic outline of the bird.

The next step is to go in with your dark paints and start to build the contours and crevices.  Now you might be saying "wait, I thought this was a blue bird?". That is the beauty of painting with oils! By starting with these dark colors we are going to build layers that add depth and shadows.
If you are using a reference photo, make note of the darkest areas.  Think of your painting as a "color by number".  Don't be afraid if your painting looks too dark, we will lighten it later. You will have to let this layer dry before going in with your blue paints. Oil paint takes much longer to dry than acrylic, it might take a few days before you are ready to paint again.
Once your base layer is dry it's time to add your primary color layers.  Because oil paint is transparent, you will find that your dark areas stay dark! Again, think of the color by numbers, use darker blue for the areas of contour, and lighter colors for highlights.
 For the branch, I alternated long and short brush strokes and different browns, black, and white paint.
 Our little bird is starting to look like a Tanager!
I knew I wanted a basic background.  I chose a green wash.  By mixing green and white on your palette and adding some turpentine, your paint will "wash" onto the canvas.
I continued to go back and add highlights in white.  One of the most drastic highlights you can add is a simple dot of white in the eye. You will be amazed how much life it brings to your piece!
 Close up of the face


Hope you enjoyed this tutorial! I would love any feedback!

M.  

Tuesday
Feb122013

Hope Comes in Color: Making Art for Charity!


For the past few months my husband and I have been planning the 12x12 Art Show and Silent Auction that will benefit the Newton Sister City Project.  We have been working with an AMAZING team of artists, friends, and professors to make this charity art show a reality!

The Newton Sister City Project is near and dear to me because they helped me travel to Nicaragua to do service work when I was attending Lasell College.  From the NSCP website, their mission is "to work alongside our Nicaraguan friends to improve education and healthcare, and to employ appropriate technology at the village level." The project helps fund educational advancement, clean water and cooking technologies, and helps students travel to this amazing country to learn, bond, and grow.

The 12x12 Art Show and Silent Auction will feature an amazing group of artists of all mediums.  ALL pieces in the show are up for auction and ALL proceeds will go to the Newton Sister City Project.  You can visit the art show site here: http://www.digitalfisch.com/12by12/12by12.html and the Newton Sister City Project site here: http://sanjuandelsursistercityproject.wordpress.com/about/

Here is a sneak peek of two of the pieces I will be putting in the show!

This first piece is "Hope Comes in Color" 12x12 Acrylic on wrapped canvas.


You can buy prints and accessories of "Hope Comes in Color" on my Society6 account! Follow this link http://society6.com/SeeMollyCreate/Hope-Comes-in-Color_Framed-Print#12=60&13=55

 Canvas Tote Bags
$18
 iPhone Cases
$35
There are also several options for prints, framed prints, stationary cards, even Sweatshirts!

All proceeds from sales from the "Hope Comes in Color" Series will be donated to the Sister City Foundation!

This next piece is a 12x12 Oil on Canvas. The bird is a Blue-Grey Tanager that is found in Nicaragua. 

This painting is still in progress and I am very excited about how it is coming along. *Look for an upcoming tutorial of this piece here on the blog!

Thank you for taking the time to read about this awesome Foundation and our upcoming Art Show!

M.


Monday
Dec242012

Painting Baby Ben


Recently, I have been really into giving art as gifts for special occasions.  So when my college roommate had her first baby, I knew I wanted to paint her something for mother's day.  What better subject to paint than her beautiful baby boy!

I thought I would share a tutorial for this painting.  I really enjoyed the process.  I used oil paints for this portrait so it took a LONG time (about a year all together). I used their announcement card as a reference photo.

The early photos are pretty poor quality, so bear with me.

Once I had a sketch down on the canvas I started filling in color.  By placing dark colors down early, I was able to build the shadows and details.



 At this point I really start going in with dark colors to highlight the shadows.  Pay attention to all the nooks and crannies! I've said it before, and I'll say it again: Don't be afraid to go too dark with oil paint! You can always lighten it by layering. That's the beauty of the medium.

I chose to use a thinning medium to change the consistency of the paint as the face progressed.  I use Turpentine. The Winsor & Newton Oil Painting Solvents are affordable and effective.  You can find them at your local craft store or Dick Blick online.


Thinning mediums (like Turpentine) are solvents that are mixed with oil paints to change the consistency. Basically changing the paint from fat to thin.  When you see oil paints that are glossy and shiny, chances are the paint was mixed with a thinner.

For the hair, I used a fan brush like this Royal Langnickel Sofia Fan from Dick Blick.

 This type of brush allows you to "fan" color on to the canvas, while creating a hair texture.

Here are some close-ups:




I went to Michaels to have this little guy framed. Their custom framing department is always helpful and they have a decent selection of frames and mouldings.


It was so special to give this portrait to my friend and hear now 2 year old Bennett point and say "that's Bennett!"

M.

Friday
Sep072012

Buy Prints and Products!

Now you can buy art prints and iPhone and laptop accessories featuring my artwork!

On my blog: visit the Prints & Products tab


Society6 is a company that produces prints and products on behalf of the artist.  It is a wonderful site with AMAZING art. Be careful, it can be as addictive as Pintrest, Etsy, and Craftgawker....best look when you have a morning off to enjoy with a cup of Joe and be ready for tons of great art!